Bill Johnson - First American To Win Olympic Downhill Gold

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by 3MTA3, Feb 16, 2014.

  1. 3MTA3

    Western Oregon
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    Not sure how many of you remember Bill Johnson, the first skier from outside the Alps to win Olympic gold in a downhill event. I remember those games well - Olympic downhill legend Franz Klammer brushing calling him a nose picker, only to be beaten by this brash young American. It's strange that his story has been absent from local and national coverage during the Olympic games.

    Johnson learned to ski in Boise, then later moved to Brightwood, Oregon on the slopes of Mt. Hood. After a run in with the law Johnson was offered a choice of attending a ski academy or six months in jail. Fortunately Johnson chose the ski academy and went on to make history. Seems to me there is something to learn there about handling troubled youth, but we seem to learn neither from success or failure. I digress.

    Johnson struggled after those games in 1984, both in his career and experienced family tragedy in the loss of his son. In a comeback attempt to make the 2002 Olympics, Johnson lost control during a training run and crashed nearly getting killed. He was comatose for nearly 3 weeks. He sustained brain damage and is permanently impaired. He requires constant care. Until 2010 he lived in Zigzag Oregon under care by his mother, but is now in a care facility in Gresham Oregon, and not likely long for the world.

    Let's take a moment to remember the accomplishment and struggle of this brash and brave American who bucked the odds and made us all proud. He can use our wishes and prayers during his final struggle.

    Bill Johnson (skier) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

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